In Uncategorized on 06/27/2017 at 16:14

So often do ex-spouses whose divorce decrees specify the other spouse must pay all income tax liabilities discover the hard way that IRS doesn’t enforce divorce decrees. That the ex-spouse so obligated stiffs both the loved-once and the IRS is unfortunate, but STJ Diana L. Leyden is no more sympathetic than any other judge: the law is what it is, and the State court decree cuts no coarse-grain Dijon in the USTC.

I’ve given up citing to the large number of such cases I’ve blogged, and the unblogged substantially exceed the blogged.

Today, however, Patrice Anna Butsko, Petitioner and Geoffrey W. Butsko, Intervenor, Docket No. 17147-16S, filed 6/27/17 show how to save a Section 6015 innocent spousery when it’s about to crater.

Patty Ann petitions a NOD dumping her innocent spousery, even though Geof was supposed to pony up the tax, add-ons and chops, because he didn’t. It’s a “stand alone,” that is, an application for innocent spousery without a SNOD involved.

Patty Ann wasn’t done, though. She haled Geof into the Circuit Court of Loudoun County, VA.

STJ Di picks up the tale. Patty Ann sends STJ Di a billet doux: “Please find the following documents that relate to the satisfaction of the IRS outstanding taxes and responsibility. The matter was tried, in Loudoun County… and resolved in court… with proof of payment. Please let me know if there is any other documentation that is needed for the closing/withdrawing of the above mentioned Docket number (removal from the case).

“Petitioner attached to her letter a copy of an order from the Circuit Court of Loudoun County… finding that intervenor was found in willful contempt for his failure to pay the 2010 tax liability and ordering him to either pay in full or establish an installment agreement with the IRS to pay the entire tax liability for 2010…. Petitioner also attached to her letter a copy of correspondence from intervenor’s attorney in that case… stating that intervenor had paid, among other tax liabilities, the 2010 tax liability and including a copy of the check as proof of payment.” Order, at pp. 1-2.

Now Patty Ann wants STJ Di to toss without prejudice. While petitioners can move to dismiss a “stand-alone,” if the 90-day clock has run, so has petitioner’s chance to contest afresh.

“However, dismissal without prejudice is not possible at this stage of the proceeding. Because petitioner will be outside of the 90-day window for filing another stand alone petition challenging the IRS determination, dismissal of this case will preclude her from further contesting in this Court her entitlement to section 6015 relief for the tax year at issue.” Order, at p. 2 (Citations omitted).

So, since neither Patty Ann, nor Geof, nor IRS objects, petition dismissed.

Takeaway- If one spouse agrees but welches, sue early and sue often.

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